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ESG - Investing responsibly

At Berenberg, ESG investment strategies take into account Environmental (E), Social (S) and Governance (G) issues on top of traditional fundamental issues such as micro and macroeconomic information. “ESG investing”, in essence, is a term that is used synonymously with “ethical screening”, “sustainable and responsible investing” and even with “impact investing”.

Berenberg ESG Office

To define our ESG principles and strategy, to position ESG investments, to develop and increase the range of ESG products on offer and to integrate ESG into the investment process, we have set up a separate department, the Berenberg ESG Office.

Ethical screening

Many of our clients have their own range of specific ethical criteria through exclusions lists. We have developed strategies and resources to ensure that our investment process can be tailored to their pre-defined values or beliefs.

Sustainable and responsible investing

Companies are evaluated and screened based on their ESG risk and sustainability credentials with a particular emphasis on scrutinizing controversial business practices.

Impact investing

Selection of companies with the intention to generate returns alongside social and environmental impact.

ESG investing is also about understanding companies and countries from a sustainable investment perspective. By addressing ESG issues in our investment decisions, we support to create positive outcomes for the environment and society. The topics that are commonly considered in the E,S and G categories are:


  • Climate change
  • Environmental pollution
  • Deforestation
  • Eco-friendly technologies
  • Greenhouse gas emissions



  • Working conditions
  • Health and security
  • Fair trade products
  • Employee relations and diversity
  • Support local communities



  • Briberey and corruption
  • Compensation structure
  • Board diversity and structure
  • Cyber-security
  • Anti-competitive practices

ESG at Berenberg

We understand the value of integrating ESG factors into our investment decisions in order to better manage material ESG risk in our portfolios. We believe that engagement is very important and part and parcel of ESG integration. Our highly experienced portfolio managers actively engage with companies on ESG issues in order to understand company behaviour better, especially their potential growth drivers and to hopefully influence them on being better on sustainability topics. We also integrate ESG factors to ensure that our portfolios contain companies that are fully sustainable.

Berenberg is a signatory to the United Nations supported Principles for Responsible Investment (UNPRI) since August 2018.

ESG Consulting

We support you in specific ESG fields of action and provide you with compre­hensive support regarding the imple­mentation of your individual sustainable invest­ment strategy. Our range of services includes assis­tance in the formulation of ESG policies and invest­ment guide­lines as well as regulatory issues. We also offer training on general and specific ESG content.

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Berenberg ESG Investments

At Berenberg we have managed sustainable strategies for decades. We also offer various other ESG-integrated strategies in both quantitative and discretionary methods, across the asset classes in which we invest (equity and fixed income).

ESG Funds

Our Berenberg Sustainable World Equities invests worldwide in companies that make a positive impact on the environment and society through their products and services, taking into account Berenberg ESG values. The selection of the companies is carried out "bottom-up", i.e. based on fundamental company data. Correspondingly, the companies should demonstrate above-average structural growth and be able to generate long-term sustainable earnings. In addition, the business model and key business metrics needs to be compelling. The focus is on detailed discussions with analysts and company representatives.

To funds overview

Sustainability-related product information

Our Berenberg Sustainable EM Bonds strategy aims to select particularly USD-denominated emerging market sovereign bonds under sustainability aspects and by means of an active, quantitative investment process. This systematic, transparent investment process enables an admixture of ESG-compliant companies from the emerging markets, in addition to a selection of sustainable states with strong fundamentals. The portfolio is under ongoing risk management through active control and if desired static hedging against currency risk vis-a-vis the euro.

To funds overview

Sustainability-related product information

The Berenberg Sustainable Stiftung is a conservative multi-asset fund considering foundation-specific aspects. The portfolio is broadly diversified in bonds, equities (max. 35%) and alternative investments (max. 10%). One condition for the selection of securities is the fulfilment of the Berenberg sustainability criteria. The investment ratios, the capital commitment period as well as the regional or/and sectoral allocation are actively managed and derived from macroeconomic, fundamental, and technical indicators. The investment strategy is implemented with a focus on Europe by using single stock investments and funds for specific investment themes. Derivatives may be used for hedging purposes. The fund has the following characteristics: continuously high dividend distributions - long-term investment horizon with tactical allocation management - comprehensive ESG approach with positive impact on environment and society. The fund is distribution-oriented, with distributions occurring semi-annually.

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Sustainability-related product information

Our Berenberg Sustainable Euro Bonds invests primarily in EUR-denominated fixed and variable interest bonds with an investment grade rating, taking into account sustainability criteria. The focus is on earmarked bonds and issuers that offer added value for the environment and society and contribute to solving global challenges such as climate change, water shortage or demographic change. In addition to corporate and financial bonds, investments are made in (almost) government bonds and covered bonds. The duration of the capital commitment is actively managed and the portfolio is subject to ongoing risk management.

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Sustainability-related product information

ESG Asset Management Strategies

Berenberg ESG Policy

The Berenberg ESG Policy provides an overview of our ESG philosophy as well as the integration approach of ESG within our Investment Processes.

> More on our Berenberg ESG Policy

Berenberg ESG Exclusion Policy

This policy provides a better understanding and clarity on how we choose our Berenberg ESG Exclusion Criteria.

> More on our ESG Exclusion Policy

Berenberg Proxy Voting Policy

The Berenberg Proxy Voting Policy is a set of guidelines meant to give an indication of how we would typically recommend on voting.

> More on our Berenberg Proxy Voting Policy

Engagement Policy

This policy describes how we conduct active dialogue with companies.

> More on our Berenberg Engagement Policy

Active Ownership Report 2020

The Berenberg Active Ownership Report describes our 2020 activities in the areas of engagement and proxy voting.

> More on our Active Ownership Report

Head of ESG Office
Dr. Rupini Deepa Rajagopalan
Phone +49 69 91 30 90 -513

ESG Office
Till Schultis
Phone +49 69 91 30 90-492

Senior Consultant
Frederic Waterstraat
Phone +49 40 350 60-411